A review of The Gift of Prophetic Encouragement by Debbie Kitterman

The Bridge-Building Ministry of Encouragement

Debbie Kitterman’s class comprised a delightful balance of both brown and white faces, and when she overheard the symphony of Spanish and English conversations, her curiosity was piqued. At the first opportunity, she approached the pastor of the Hispanic congregation that was hosting her class.

“How come half of my class doesn’t speak Spanish?” she queried. “Do they attend your congregation?”

“No,” he replied. “During our joint staff meeting, I mentioned to the pastoral staff I was going to have you come teach my congregation on how to hear from God, so word got out.”

The desire to hear God’s Truth and to encourage others through His Word was strong enough to bridge the gap between two cultures, and if we were honest, this is a bridge upon which we all need to place the soles of our feet. Finding that Christians everywhere need a bit of help getting outside our comfort zones, Debbie Kitterman has shared her own journey along with the good news that God intends for us to build one another up as we speak words of Truth. In The Gift of Prophetic Encouragement: Hearing the Words of God for Others, we find Kitterman’s confidence and fervor flow from years of learning alongside biblical characters like little Samuel that the voice of God in our ears and in our hearts requires action on our part.

God the Holy Spirit is Living and Active

Debbie’s ministry trumpets the “freelance nature of the Holy Spirit.” The third Person of the Trinity is living and active, through His Word and in His people. Those who put Him in a box miss out on the full display of His power at work in ordinary people.  Furthermore, we are built for connection, for relationship with God and with each other. Living in harmony with the example of Jesus means embracing a lifestyle of encouragement. “Jesus had radical encounters with ordinary people every day. By listening to the Father’s voice and doing what the Father said, Jesus was able to release heaven into the situations and lives of those He encountered.” (21)

When we take the risk of sharing God’s truth with others for the purpose of encouraging them in their walk with God, that movement into obedience may have the domino effect of moving them into obedience as well. As we align our words and our actions with the plumb line of Scripture, we will find ourselves swept up into the bridge-building ministry of a God whose invitation is open and full of hope:

“Forget the former things;
    do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.”  (Isaiah 43:18, 19)

Many thanks to Chosen Books for providing a copy of this book to facilitate my review, which, of course, is offered freely and with honesty.

Rejoicing in God’s Redemptive Work,

Michele Morin

I  am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. If you should decide to purchase The Gift of Prophetic Encouragement: Hearing the Words of God for Others simply click on the title (or the image) within the text, and you’ll be taken directly to Amazon. If you decide to buy, I’ll make a small commission at no extra cost to you.

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Michele Morin

Michele Morin is a teacher, blogger, reader, and gardener who finds joy in sitting at a table surrounded by women with open Bibles. She has been married to an unreasonably patient husband for nearly 30 years, and together they have four sons, two daughters-in-love, two grandchildren, and one lazy St. Bernard. Michele loves hot tea and well-crafted sentences, poems that stop her in her tracks and days at the ocean with the whole family. She laments biblical illiteracy and advocates for the prudent use of “little minutes.” She blogs at Living Our Days, and you can connect with her on Facebook or Twitter.

88 thoughts on “The Bridge-Building Ministry of Encouragement”

    1. Molly, I too loved how Michele drew out this particular story from my book. It’s so true, that many perceive believers as crating barriers instead we need to build bridges and as we all work together, I think we can change the perspective.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Michele,
    I love the idea of the “freelance nature of the Holy Spirit”. We never know when we will be called upon to speak into the lives of others so we need to be prepared and listening. People hunger for the Truth….may we be vigilant in how we bring it to them.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

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  2. I love “When we take the risk of sharing God’s truth with others for the purpose of encouraging them in their walk with God, that movement into obedience may have the domino effect of moving them into obedience as well.” So good! Thank you for sharing! ~Sandra from “He Gently Leads You”.

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    1. Sandra – thank you for taking the time to read Michele’s review of my book. It is so true that when we risk sharing God’s truth with others to encourage them, we can create a domino, or ripple effect that resounds throughout eternity – much farther than we may ever know. Blessings

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Just the other day I was reading in Luke regarding the “blind guides” we are to avoid and not be like, Michele. And the emphasis in Debbie’s book reminds me of the need to be a clear-sighted guide and influencer in other people’s lives. There is so much good we can do for others when we make efforts to spiritually encourage! Thanks for this review and reminder! I’ll be pinning!

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    1. How frightening — Really frightening to have that label turned in one’s direction. Thanks for making the connection with your reading, Beth. I do appreciate your input and your encouragement.

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    2. Beth, thank you so much for pinning this post and also for sharing how God connected the pieces between what you were reading and Michele’s review of my book. It is so very true, we need to be clear-sighted and intentional about what we do and what we say – just like Jesus was. Blessings.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Michele, I so appreciate your always bringing things back to the “plumbline of Scripture” with which all our encouragement must be aligned. This vein of ‘prophetic’ encouragement can go so, so wrong with damaging effect when we insist on our own words being inspired and thus shared. Thank-you for reminding us to anchor them in the Word.

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    1. Thank you, Linda, for standing with me there. It’s a fearsome and an awesome (in the traditional sense, I mean) thing to speak for God, and we err when we claim to put words in His mouth that are not directly from Him.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Linda, I so agree of the importance of Scripture being our foundation and plumb line. Any time God speaks it will always line up with His word and His character. In fact, the reason I started writing the book is because of the misuse of this particular gift (I share the story in the book). Thank you for taking the time to read Michele’s review and leave a comment.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. That bridge-building, and bridge-walking sometimes takes us to places so unexpected! I am reminded of our friend Jayber, that we were following so closely last year at this time. Standing on that bridge with him, watching the sea of people trying to escape the river’s flooding offered us a unique perspective of how many people were longing for safety. Oh, may I open my eyes and ears to be able to share the encouragement that God brings! Thanks for this great review, and the great memories that were stirred up too!

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    1. Thank you for good memories of our friend Jayber. I’ve been reading about his fellow Port William native Hannah Coulter, and she’s blessing my heart with her thankfulness.
      Thanks for exercising your giftedness so sweetly as you encourage!

      Liked by 1 person

    2. BettieG – You are so right – bridge building and bridge walking does indeed take us to unexpected places. I don’t know your and Michele’s mutual friend Jayber, but it sounds like a powerful experience to have been a part of.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Michele,

    Sharing God’s love through example is the best teacher for those who do not understand. It’s with the blind eye lost souls see there is something bigger and better just waiting for them. This causes them to question that difference and to yearn for it to be a part of their lives. I like that you basically said we must do more than pray, but to allow our prayers to grow feet and allow God to use us to fulfill these prayers. One has to keep her/his ear to God’s lips 24/7 to know the direction that we should walk. Thanks for sharing such a lovely book review.

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    1. Cathy – I love the picture you painted here with your words and I can so relate to what you said too. I am a show me how to do it persona, meaning – I learn through example. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and reading the review of my book

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Michele, thanks for sharing this, I always would say I am not called to be an evangelist so I could get a pass and let others do it, but then God spoke to my heart and said I was wrong, I didn’t get a pass. I have a responsibility to share the “Good News” of the Gospel with others and also tell them of what Jesus has done for me. I may not ever be a Billy Graham, but I can share my story with those in my circle. 🙂 thanks for this response.

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  7. I read and was blessed by Debbie’s book as well. Encouragement is a gift to give and to also receive. I’ve been spending days on the very same portion of Isaiah (34:18-19) and so this review blessed me in seeing it again. I love when God speaks to my heart by repetition and in the sweetest of ways. Thank you for speaking to my heart this morning!

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    1. Joanne – I am so blessed by you being a part of my launch team and sharing how my book has blessed you! It was great to read Michele’s review and also having her use Isaiah 34:18-19 – this is in fact the verse for our church this year and the word that goes with it, is Walking In Newness. As I am re-reading it this morning and your comment, He is speaking to my heart again about it and I needed that reminder. Thank you both 🙂 Blessings

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Linda – I too speak Spanish poorly, I know just enough to get into trouble – meaning I sound like I know what I am doing, until someone begins speaking rapid Spanish and then expects me to respond. LOL But, I think God honors that we attempt to speak Spanish and connect with others. All I have to say is Thank you Jesus for good interpreters. LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Michele,
    This sounds like an amazing book! We need more encouragement. This is such a necessary spiritual gift. Thanks for sharing. Stopping by via the Worth Beyond Rubies Linkup. Praying you have a blessed week! Always great to linkup with you 🙂
    ~Sherry
    xoxo

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    1. Sherry – thank you for your comment. I so agree with you – we do need more encouragement in today and the gift of prophetic encouragement is much needed and is a necessity in the world today! Blessings and again thank you for taking the time to read about my book. I hope you will get an opportunity to check it out.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Bridges are key to our walk with God. I am so grateful the Holy Spirit will meet us there. What a beautiful response from people who want to know the Truth, for it will set us free.
    Thanks for sharing, Michelle.

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    1. Yes, so much of Debbie’s story is wrapped up in the space between people where God builds a bridge. And I think we all have a lot to learn about putting our feet on that bridge.
      Thanks, Linda, for reading!

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    2. Hi Linda! It’s so good to see you here and thank you for reading the review on my book. Bridge building is so important in our walk with God and with others. We have to figure out how to bridge the gap so we can all come together. Blessings

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lisa, aren’t Michele’s reviews the best? I love reading her perspective on a book and I feel incredibly blessed to have had her review my book as well. I hope that you will get the opportunity to read my book for yourself sometime soon, and when you do get a chance to read it. I would love to hear what you have to say. Blessings 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m a cautious introvert as well. And I’m not eager to share my personal details with people I don’t know well. I often wonder if I would ever have come to faith if God had not found me when I was still young.

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    2. I understand the struggle, I truly do….but then I realized that it doesn’t have to be blatant, and outright of bringing up religion – I am not good at that part, but when I see it as more of an overflow out of casual conversation then I can share with others about what God is doing in my daily life and how it helps me. I do hope you will get the opportunity to read my book. Blessings

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Mary, not sure how I missed your comment a few weeks ago – sorry about that, but I just wanted you to know that I completely agree with you Michele does a fabulous job or reviewing books! I love to read her reviews and it often has me adding books to my must read list. LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Michele, what a wonderful review of Debbie’s powerful new book! I love this quote from your review, “When we take the risk of sharing God’s truth with others for the purpose of encouraging them in their walk with God, that movement into obedience may have the domino effect of moving them into obedience as well. ” Love how God uses His “domino effect” to connect the dots to His plan, His hope, and His future for each of us. Many blessings to you!

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  11. Michele –

    I am sorry that I am late to reply to everyone’s comments here from your review last week. I thought I had already commented saying thank you for your review, but for some reason, it must not have posted. So here I am today and I want to say thank you for your beautiful review and for taking so much care to draw out pieces from the book that ministered to you. You book reviews always bless me and I am beyond honored that you were able to read and review my book as well. Thank you so much! Blessings

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    1. Debbie, I was blown away by your generosity of spirit in taking time to respond to and honor each and every person who commented on this post. I know you are a busy ministry professional and time is scarce, so thank you for humbly making yourself available here.

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  12. “and if we were honest, this is a bridge upon which we all need to place the soles of our feet”, amazing! Need we say more? #Ablogginggoodtime thank you for joining us again lovely lady xx

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    1. Thanks Mackenzie for taking the time to read my review and I love the charge/challenge Michelle gave int he quote you mentioned. , not sure how I missed your comment a few weeks ago – sorry about that, life has been a little crazy 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Tina, thank you for taking the time to read my review at Michele’s place. I am a little behind on comments, but I always like to try to interact with the people who take the time to read a review of my book and then leave comments. Thank you for doing so.

      Liked by 1 person

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